Nova Scotia

Taavel accused killer's psych test delayed

The man accused of murdering gay activist Raymond Taavel was in court this morning, but the Crown asked for more time to do a psychiatric assessment.

Denny accused in Taavel murder

The man accused of murdering gay activist Raymond Taavel was in court this morning, but the Crown asked for more time to do a psychiatric assessment.

Andre Denny allegedly beat Taavel to death outside a Gottingen Street bar in April.

The Crown had to bring in a psychiatrist from Ontario to do the assessment, because the East Coast Forensic Hospital has declared itself in conflict on the case.

Denny was a patient at the hospital, and was on a temporary pass at the time of the murder.

The complex nature of the case, and the fact that the psychiatrist is from out of town, have meant that the assessment will go on beyond the normal 60 days, said Crown prosecutor Darrell Martin.

"The (criminal) code does prescribe a 60-day outer limit," he said. "However, I think it's in everyone's interest -- the Crown, society, the defendant and the defence lawyers -- to get an opinion with respect to what was happening with Mr. Denny at the time that this crime was allegedly committed."

The psychiatrist must determine if Denny is fit to stand trial. Then another court must decide if he is criminally responsible. Only then could his case go to trial.

now